HOUSTON, TX – Even in death, Venezuela’s Hugo Chavez can rile up Texans.
Shortly after Chavez drew his last breath, the Citgo headquarters in Houston lowered the Venezuelan and Citgo flags, along with Old Glory and the Texas flag.
Venezuela has totally owned Citgo since 1990, so the bosses probably felt they had to do something when Chavez died. What they do with their own flag is their business, but we have rules concerning ours.
The US flag code says the president of the United States can order the Stars-and-Stripes to be flown at half-staff for foreign dignitaries, but Citgo won’t tell us if they asked the White House for permission.
To be fair, the code allows Citgo to lower the flag, as long as it is in accordance with recognized custom, whatever that is.
The Texas flag code is not as vague, requiring approval from the governor.
Josh Havens is governor Perry’s spokesperson, and he told us the governor wouldn’t have approved, even if asked, because ‘Flags are lowered as a sign of respect, and the death of Hugo Chavez does not warrant this honor.’
No one’s gonna take Citgo to court over the flag, but in Texas, we take flags and symbols more seriously than some folks.